JPMorgan is the biggest bank in the US and a bellwether for the global fibioreportscial system. So when it comes to the bank’s most senior leaders, and particularly those in position to replace CEO Jamie Dimon, Wall Street pays attention.
Business Insider identified the lender’s 70 or so most important executives. We compiled the list by speaking with current and former employees, competitors, and recruiters, focusing our search on the operating committee and an executive cohort one level down at JPMorgan’s four business units. We decided to avoid most staff members in the control or corporate functions, aside from a few key people.
A JPMorgan spokesman declined to comment for this project.
At the top is none other than Dimon, who’s been the CEO or chairman of the firm since January 2006, roughly 18 months after his Chicago lender, Bank One, was purchased by JPMorgan Chase. Dimon enjoys a reputation as the best banker, or among the best bankers, of his generation — and, as Roger Lowenstein wrote in The New York Times Magazine in 2010, the “least hated.”
As he’s aged, Dimon has developed a reputation for sidelining CEO challengers. The industry is littered with those thought to be potential successors.
To name just a few: Jes Staley, now the CEO of Barclays; Bill Winters, the former JPMorgan investment-banking cohead who now runs Standard Chartered; Charles Scharf, the former retail-banking exec who’s now the CEO of Bank of New York Mellon after a stint running the payments processor Visa; and Frank Bisigbioreportso, the former co-chief operating officer who’s now the president and COO of Fiserv. Matt Zames, another COO and rumored successor, left rather suddenly in 2017.
When asked about his eventual retirement, Dimon has said he’d like to work for another five years or so. The comment has become a running joke among Wall Street analysts, investors, and even JPMorgan execs. But at 63, Dimon is approaching the typical retirement age, and there’s talk that his “another five years” might actually be counting down.
Earlier this year, JPMorgan moved its longtime chief fibioreportscial officer and potential-successor shortlist member Marianne Lake to a job running consumer lending. The credit-card chief Jennifer Piepszak took Lake’s role as CFO.
The moves were widely interpreted as being part of succession planning, with some wondering if this meant Lake was out of the running or just getting needed operating experience, or if Piepszak was now the favored one. Another strain of thought was that Dimon was positioning a replacement for Gordon Smith, the consumer-banking chief rumored to be in talks for the top job at Wells Fargo.
Smith is still at JPMorgan and had some wise words in late May on how he thinks about the bank’s broader leadership team, in the context of all the focus on Dimon’s replacement.
“It’s very obvious and understandable why Jamie’s succession is what gets the vast majority of the ink,” he said at an investor conference that month. “But what we all worry about is — yes, the CEO, but who are the 15 people or so, plus or minus, that will be on the operating committee of the firm that will steer it for the next decade, the decades following Jamie’s rolling five [years until retirement]? What will be that group of people?”
This list gives you the inside track on identifying that group.